Here Today, Gone Tomorrow

After being in the deep freeze for a few days, the warming trend begins on Thursday!

There has been a lot of shivering taking place around Charlottesville for the past few days. The coldest air of the season settled in and gave us temperatures in the lower teens on Wednesday morning. That was some of the coldest air we had experienced in nearly an entire year. Even people who wanted the cold weather quickly changed their tune with the arrival of our first real blast of winter temperatures. If this chill has you longing for warmer days, you don't have to look very far!

It's all about the jet stream - the fast moving river of air, miles above our heads in the higher levels of the atmosphere. This river of air helps to separate the colder air to the north, from the milder air to the south. The jet stream plunged southward earlier in the week and that's what allowed all of that cold air to come surging in from Canada. The outlook calls for a complete reversal in the pattern. The jet stream will gradually lift back to our north in a configuration that we refer to as a ridge. Under the ridge there's a lot of sinking air. That air compresses and as a result, it warms. Here's what it means for the forecast...

Thursday will feature highs in the upper 40s, but that's just the beginning. By Friday and Saturday, highs will be in the upper 50s and even some lower 60s! It won't stay that warm for too long, but the extended outlook doesn't show any arctic air moving back in anytime soon.

For chuckles, I thought I'd look up the warmest temperature ever recorded in Charlottesville in the month of January. I almost couldn't believe it! 81º has been achieved once in the month of January - on January 15, 1932. Now that's some heat!

Until next time...

Brantley

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